Thu . 19 Jun 2019

Elliott Erwitt

elliott erwitt, elliott erwitt photography
Elliott Erwitt born Elio Romano Erwitt, 26 July 1928 is an American advertising and documentary photographer known for his black and white candid shots of ironic and absurd situations within everyday settings— a master of Henri Cartier-Bresson's "decisive moment"


  • 1 Early life
  • 2 Photography career
  • 3 Filmmaking career
  • 4 Exhibitions
  • 5 Notable photographs
  • 6 Books
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links

Early lifeedit

Erwitt was born in Paris, France, to Jewish-Russian immigrant parents, who soon moved to Italy In 1939, when he was ten, his family immigrated to the United States He studied photography and filmmaking at Los Angeles City College and the New School for Social Research, finishing his education in 1950 In 1951 he was drafted into the Army, and decommissioned in 1953

Photography careeredit

Vienna 2012

Erwitt served as a photographer's assistant in the 1950s in the United States Army while stationed in France and Germany He was influenced by meeting the famous photographers Edward Steichen, Robert Capa and Roy Stryker Stryker, the former Director of the Farm Security Administration's photography department, hired Erwitt to work on a photography project for the Standard Oil Company He then began a freelance photographer career and produced work for Collier's, Look, Life and Holiday Erwitt was invited to become a member of Magnum Photos by the founder Robert Capa 2

One of the subjects Erwitt has frequently photographed in his career is dogs: they have been the subject of five of his books, Son of Bitch 1974, To the Dogs 1992, Dog Dogs 1998, Woof 2005, and Elliott Erwitt's Dogs 20083

Erwitt has created an alter ego, the beret-wearing and pretentious "André S Solidor" which abbreviates to "ass" — "a contemporary artist, from one of the French colonies in the Caribbean, I forget which one" — in order to "satirise the kooky excesses of contemporary photography" His work was published in a book, The Art of André S Solidor 2009, and exhibited in 2011 at the Paul Smith Gallery in London34

Erwitt was awarded the Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Medal and an honorary fellowship HonFRPS in 2002 in recognition of a sustained, significant contribution to the art of photography5 and the International Center for Photography's Infinity Award, Lifetime Achievement category, in 20116

Filmmaking careeredit

Since the 1970s, he has devoted much of his energy toward movies His feature films, television commercials, and documentary films include Arthur Penn: the Director 1970, Beauty Knows No Pain 1971, Red, White and Bluegrass 1973 and the prize-winningclarification needed Glassmakers of Herat, Afghanistan 1977 He was, as well, credited as camera operator for Gimme Shelter 1970, still photographer for Bob Dylan: No Direction Home 2005, and provided addition photography for Get Yer Ya Ya's Out 20097

A collection of Erwitt's films were screened in 2011 as part of the DocNYC Festival's special event "An Evening with Elliott Erwitt"


  • 2011 "Elliott Erwitt: Personal Best", International Center for Photography, New York, NY8
  • 2011 "Elliott Erwitt, Black & White and Kolor", A Gallery for Fine Photography, New Orleans, LA9
  • 2016-2017 "Elliott Erwitt: Home Around The World", Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin10

Notable photographsedit

  • USA, New York City, 1946 - Streetlevel shot comparing the size of a woman's feet to a sweatered chihuahua
  • USA, North Carolina, Segregated Water Fountains, 1950
  • USA, New York City, 1953 - Image of Erwitt's wife looking at their baby on a bed lit by window light
  • USA, NYC, Felix, Gladys, and Rover, 1974 - Image of a woman's booted feet between that of a Great Dane's legs and a little chihuahua
  • USSR, Russia, Moscow, Nikita Khrushchev and Richard Nixon, 1959 - Powerful Cold War image in which Nixon is poking his index finger at Khrushchev's suit lapel
  • USA, California, 1955 - Image of a side-view mirror of an automobile parked facing a beach sunset, with a playful couple shown in the mirror as the focal point


  • Photographs and Anti-Photographs, 1972
  • Observations on American Architecture, 1972
  • Elliott Erwitt: The Private Experience In the series "Masters of Contemporary Photography", text by Sean Callahan Los Angeles: Petersen, 1974 ISBN 0-8227-0070-0 Sean Callahan describes and to some extent explains Erwitt's work
  • Son of Bitch, 1974 Photographs of dogs
  • Recent Developments, 1978
  • Personal Exposures 1988
  • On the Beach, 1991
  • To The Dogs, 1992
  • The Angel Tree, 1993
  • Between the Sexes, 1994
  • 100+1 Elliott Erwitt, 1997
  • Dog Dogs, 1998 A collection of black and white photographs of dogs Erwitt was intrigued by throughout his world travels
  • Museum Watching, 1999
  • Snaps London & New York: Phaidon, 2001 ISBN 0-7148-4150-1 A large anthology over 500 pages of Erwitt's work
  • EE 60/60, 2002
  • Elliott Erwitt's Handbook, 2002
  • Woof, 2005
  • Elliott Erwitt's Rome:teNeues Publishing, 2009
  • Elliott Erwitt's New York', 2009
  • The Art of Andre S Solidor aka Elliott Erwitt, 2010
  • Elliott Erwitt Personal Best, 2010
  • Elliott Erwitt, Sequentially Yours, 2011
  • Elliott Erwitt XXL - Special and Collectors Edition, 2012
  • Elliott Erwitt's Kolor Kempen, Germany: teNeues, 2013 ISBN 9783832795771
  • Pittsburgh 1950 London: Gost, 2017 ISBN 978-1-910401-12-5 With an essay by Vaughn Wallace Photographs made in Pittsburgh for Pittsburgh Photographic Library


  1. ^ https://wwwtheguardiancom/artanddesign/2003/dec/27/photography
  2. ^ Moakley, Paul "Elliott Erwitt's Very Own Personal Best" TIME Magazine 
  3. ^ a b Cripps, Charlotte 10 February 2011 "A drastic change of image: Magnum photographer Elliott Erwitt has crafted a glorious alter ego" The Independent Retrieved 24 April 2011 
  4. ^ "Who is André S Solidor" The Week 10 February 2011 Retrieved 24 February 2011 
  5. ^ Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Award
  6. ^ "Infinity Awards 2011" International Center for Photography Retrieved 16 March 2014 Lifetime Achievement: Elliott Erwitt 
  7. ^ http://wwwimdbcom/name/nm1268351/
  8. ^ "Elliott Erwitt: Personal Best" International Center of Photography 
  9. ^ "New Orleans : Elliott Erwitt, Black & White and Kolor" L'oeil de la Photographie 
  10. ^ "Exhibition Presents Unprecedented Study of Renowned Photographer Elliott Erwitt's Life and Work" University of Texas Austin News 

External linksedit

  • Elliott Erwitt official site requires Flash
  • Magnum Photos portfolio
  • Robert Koch Gallery portfolio
  • "Elliott Erwitt at the Museo di Roma," Financial Times London, November 20 2009
  • Peter Conrad, Elliott Erwitt's law of intended consequences, The Observer, 20 February 2011
  • ' NY Times article about the exhibition May to August at the ICP, New York City
  • Elliott Erwitt's Personal Best eBook, 2011
  • Elliott Erwitt's print archive is placed at the Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin

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